May 21, 2024

ASUU rejects new Governing Councils, wants return of former ones

Give N50bn budgeted for loan to students as grant – ASUU tells FG

President of ASUU, Emmanuel Osodeke

….Says it is not afraid to go on strike

By Adesina Wahab

The Academic Staff Union of Universities, ASUU, has said it is not accepting the new Governing Councils constituted by the Federal Government for its public tertiary institutions, saying the union is for the return of the disbanded councils.

According to the union, the issue regarding the councils is about tenure and that the tenure of the former councils had not lapsed before they were removed from office, adding that the action of the FG smacked of illegality.

Briefing newsmen at the University of Lagos, UNILAG, on Tuesday, the Lagos Zonal Coordinator of ASUU, Prof. Adelaja Odukoya, said the only condition for dismantling the former councils should be that they have breached the law setting them up.

“The issue is about the tenure of the councils. They had a tenure that they were not allowed to complete. That is illegal. The only condition that they could have been disbanded was if they committed any offence or were involved in any illegality. That was not the case. They were just swept away like that. We want them to be returned.

“If we allow this illegal act by the government to go unchallenged, somebody could just wake up from the wrong side of the bed one day and say he is even disbanding the universities. The President has a tenure of office, how would he feel if he is asked to go home when his tenure has not lapsed.

“The fact that some unions and people are thumbing up the composition of the councils does not mean they spoke for us as a union. The situation has led to some vice chancellors behaving like emperors on campuses. We have issues in some universities and we are tackling those things,” he said.

On the non-release of the withheld salaries of ASUU members, Odukoya said the government would not succeed in what it termed efforts to foist a master-servant relationship on lecturers.

“We are not slaves and we are not afraid to go on strike, the court case instituted against us by the former administration has been concluded. There is nothing stopping us from going on strike if the need arises.

They promised us when they came in that there would be peace and harmony on our campuses, but already, they are toeing the path of war.